Corbett National Park - Jim Corbett National Park

Jim Corbett National Park is the oldest national park in India and was established in 1936 as Hailey National Park to protect the endangered Bengal tiger. It is located in Nainital district of Uttarakhand and was named after Jim Corbett who played a key role in its establishment. The park was the first to come under the Project Tiger initiative.

The Corbett National park has sub-Himalayan belt geographical and ecological characteristics. An ecotourism destination, it contains 488 different species of plants and a diverse variety of fauna. The increase in tourist activities, among other problems, continues to present a serious challenge to the park's ecological balance.

Corbett has been a haunt for tourists and wildlife lovers for a long time. Tourism activity is only allowed in selected areas of Corbett Tiger Reserve so that people get an opportunity to see its splendid landscape and the diverse wildlife. In recent years the number of people coming here has increased dramatically. Presently, every season more than 70,000 visitors come to the park from India and other countries.

Corbett National Park comprises 520.8kms area of hills, riverine belts, marshy depressions, grass lands and large lake. The elevation ranges from 1,300 feet (400 m) to 4,000 feet (1,200 m). Winter nights in Corbett Park are cold but the days are bright and sunny. It rains from July to September.

Dense moist deciduous forest mainly consists of sal, haldu, pipal, rohini and mango trees, and these trees cover almost 73 per cent of the park. The 10 per cent of the area consists of grasslands. It houses around 110 tree species, 50 species of mammals, 580 bird species and 25 reptile species. The endangered Bengal tiger of India resides here.

Corbett National Park Information

Established in:

1936 (as national park)

Location:

Spread in Nainital and Pauri District, Ramnagar Town, Uttarakhand, India

Area:

1318.54 sq km

Altitude:

385 m - 1100 m above MSL

Temperature:

4°C in winter to 42°C during summer

Best Time:

15th November to 15th June

History of Jim Corbett National Park

Some areas of the park were formerly part of the princely state of Tehri Garhwal. The forests were cleared to make the area less vulnerable to Rohilla invaders. The Raja of Tehri formally ceded a part of his princely state to the East India Company in return for their assistance in ousting the Gurkhas from his domain. The Boksas—a tribe from the Terai—settled on the land and began growing crops, but in the early 1860s they were evicted with the advent of British rules.

Efforts to save the forests of the region began in the 19th century under Major Ramsay, the British Officer who was in-charge of the area during those times. The first step in the protection of the area began in 1868 when the British forest department established control over the land and prohibited cultivation and the operation of cattle stations. In 1879 these forests were constituted into a Reserve Forest where restricted felling was permitted.

In the early 1900s several Britishers, including E. R. Stevans and E. A. Smythies, suggested the idea of setting up of a national park on this soil. The British administration considered the possibility of creating a game reserve there in 1907. It was only in the 1930s that the process for demarcation of such an area got underway, assisted by Jim Corbett, who knew the area well. A reserve area known as Hailey National Park covering 323.75 km2 (125.00 sq mi) was created in 1936 when Sir Malcolm Hailey was Governor of United Provinces, and Asia's first national park came into existence. Hunting was not allowed in the reserve, but only timber cutting for domestic purposes. Soon after the establishment of the reserve, rules prohibiting killing and capturing of mammals, reptiles and birds within its boundaries were passed.

The reserve was renamed in 1954–55 as Ramganga National Park and was again renamed in 1955–56 as Corbett National Park. The new name honours the well-known author and wildlife conservationist Jim Corbett, who played a key role in creating the reserve by using his influence to persuade the provincial government to establish it.

The park fared well during the 1930s under an elected administration. But during the Second World War, it suffered from excessive poaching and timber cutting.Over time the area in the reserve was increased—797.72 km2 (308.00 sq mi) were added in 1991 as a buffer for the Corbett Tiger Reserve.The 1991 additions included the entire Kalagarh forest division, assimilating the 301.18 km2 (116.29 sq mi) area of Sonanadi Wildlife Sanctuary as a part of the Kalagarh division. It was chosen in 1974 as the location for launching Project Tiger, an ambitious and well known wildlife conservation project. The reserve is administered from its headquarters in the district of Nainital.

Corbett National Park is one of the thirteen protected areas covered by World Wildlife Fund under their Terai Arc Landscape Programme. The programme aims to protect three of the five terrestrial flagship species, the tiger, the Asian elephant and the Great One-horned Rhinoceros, by restoring corridors of forest to link 13 protected areas of Nepal and India to enable wildlife migration.

Geography of Corbett National Park

Banks of the Ramganga reservoir in the Dhikala grasslands of Corbett Tiger Reserve.

The park is located between 29°25' to 29°39'N latitude and 78°44' to 79°07'E longitude. The average altitude of the region ranges between 360 m (1,181 ft) and 1,040 m (3,412 ft). It has numerous ravines, ridges, minor streams and small plateaus with varying aspects and degrees of slopes. The park encompasses the Patli Dun valley formed by the Ramganga River. It protects parts of the Upper Gangetic Plains moist deciduous forests and Himalayan subtropical pine forests eco regions. It has a humid subtropical and highland climate.

The present area of the Reserve is 1,318.54 square kilometers (509.09 sq mi) including 520 square kilometers (200 sq mi) of core area and 797.72 square kilometers (308.00 sq mi) of buffer area. The core area forms the Jim Corbett National Park while the buffer contains reserve forests (496.54 square kilometers (191.72 sq mi)) as well as the Sonanadi Wildlife Sanctuary (301.18 square kilometers (116.29 sq mi)).

The reserve, located partly along a valley between the Lesser Himalaya in the north and the Shivaliks in the south, has a sub-Himalayan belt structure. The upper tertiary rocks are exposed towards the base of the Shiwalik range and hard sandstone units form broad ridges. Characteristic longitudinal valleys, geographically termed Doons, or Duns can be seen formed along the narrow tectonic zones between lineaments.

Corbett National Park Attraction

The Corbett National Park is measured as the well sheltered and as well the leading attractions of the country. The park has been developed by the Jim Corbett on the Himalayan mountain range and is the most visited place in the country. The fauna of the park includes the mammals, birds, reptiles and fishes.

Birds: The drongo, woodpecker, duck, stork, teal, Peacock, Jungle Fowl, Partridge, Kaleej Peasant, crow, vulture, parakeet, Laughing thrush, Oriole, kingfisher, dove, seagull and cormorant are the most well-liked species of the Corbett National Park.

Fishes: The Kalabasu, Chilwa, Mahaseer, Kalimuchi, and Gooch are the popular breeds of the fishes that are found in the Corbett National Park.

Mammals: The mammals in Corbett National Park includes the, Himalayan Palm Civet, Spotted Dear, Para, Indian Grey Mongoose, Common Otter, Sloth Bear, Himalayan Black Bear, Dhole Jackal, Yellow Throated Martem , Porcupine, Clack taped Hare, Chital, Kakka and the Barking Dear.

Reptiles: The reptiles in the park includes the Ghariyal, King Cobra, Indian Crocodile, Russels Viper, Python and the monitor lizard are the well-liked reptiles of the park.

Safari Zones in Corbett National Park

For the travelers, 797.72 square kilometers of buffer region within the Corbett National Park is open to travel around and is separated into 5 zones that includes Dhikala, Jhirna, Bijrani, Sonanadi and Domunda. Amongst them Bijrani, Jhirna, Sonanadi and Domunda comes within the Jeep safari Zone while Canter Safari Zone only covers Dhikala Zone.

Safari Timings for Winters

Morning Safari: 0730 hrs- 1030 hrs
Evening Safari: 1500 hrs - 1700 hrs

Safari Timings for Summer

Morning Safari: 0630 hrs- 0930 hrs
Evening Safari: 1600 hrs - 1800 hrs

Near by Places in Corbett National Park

Corbett Water Fall: This pristine waterfall is a treat for those who are looking for a nonviolent time amidst the wilderness. Corbett Waterfalls is 25 km away from Ramnagar, it offers a chance to the nature lovers to camp and bask in the cherished silence.

Corbett Museum: The region on which the museum is at present standing was once the home of Mr. Jim Corbett, who was a hunter in his early life. Do not fail to remember to buy a memorabilia from here.

Sitabani Forest Reserve: The place magnetizes millions of bird watchers yearly. It is also to be the place where Goddess Sita rested throughout the exile, and a very old temple dedicated to Sage Valmiki is also positioned in the reserve.

Garjiya Devi Temple: This revered shrine is to be found on the bank of Koshi River amidst the Jim Corbett National Park. The temple is sacred to Garijiya Devi and is regularly visited by devotees throughout November to December.

Sunrise Point: This is the uppermost peak in the park. From the top of the point, traveler can see the picturesque vision of both Kosi and Ramganga rivers along with the surrounding region of Bhuwankhal village.

Sitabani Temple: To be found 20 kms. Away from the Ramnagar, the temple is extremely approached throughout the day of Ramnavami.

Dhangari Museum: To be found at the entry of Jim Corbett National Park, Dhangari Museum is a place to catch sight of Wildlife reserve's history. Here travelers can spot the carcasses of animals that died naturally or in a fight, like tigers, Tusker, deer, leopard, crocodiles, etc.

Flora - Jim Corbett National Park

A total of 488 different species of plants have been recorded in the park. Tree density inside the reserve is higher in the areas of Sal forests and lowest in the Anogeissus-Acacia catechu forests. Total tree basal cover is greater in Sal dominated areas of woody vegetation. Healthy regeneration in sapling and seedling layers is occurring in the Mallotus philippensis, Jamun and Diospyros tomentosa communities, but in the Sal forests the regeneration of sapling and seedling is poor.

Climate of Jim Corbett National Park

The weather in the park is temperate compared to most other protected areas of India. The temperature may vary from 5 °C (41 °F) to 30 °C (86 °F) during the winter and some mornings are foggy. Summer temperatures normally do not rise above 40 °C (104 °F).Rainfall ranges from light during the dry season to heavy during the monsoons.

Jim Corbett National Park - Hotels and Resorts

Some of the best hotels, resorts, camps, and forest lodges in Jim Corbett National Park are Corbett Leela Vilas, Wild Crest Resort, Corbett River View Retreat, Ramganga Resort, Jukaso Manumaharani Resort, Ashoka's Tiger Trail, Ahaana Resort, Jim's Jungle Retreat, The Corbett Tusker Trail, The Golden Tusk, The Tiger's Groove, Corbett Riverside Resort.

Jim Corbett National Par Distance from the Major Cities

Nanital:

62 kms.

Delhi:

260 kms.

Lucknow:

436 kms.

Dehradun:

232 kms.

Ranikhet:

112 kms.

How to Reach Corbett National Park

By Air: The closest domestic airport is Pantnagar Airport, which is 80 km away. New Delhi is the nearest International airport.

By Train: Ramnagar (5 km), which is the nearest railway station, is well connected to all major Indian cities.

By Bus: The Park is connected to all major destinations within and outside the state by motorable roads. Visitors can easily hire a private taxi or state-owned buses to arrive at the park.